Brain-Control Interface

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Brain-Control Interface. DARPA awards up to $34.5 million to Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Md., to manage the development and testing of the Modular Prosthetic Limb (MPL) on a human subject, using a brain-controlled interface. APL scientists and engineers developed the underlying technology under DARPA’s Revolutionizing Prosthetics 2009 program, a four-year effort to create a prosthetic arm that would eclipse the World War II era hook-and-cable device used by most amputees. The program has already produced two complex prototypes, each advancing the art of upper-arm prosthetics. The final MPL design offers 22 degrees of motion, in an approximately nine- pound package, which is about the weight of a natural limb. MPL is is designed to respond to a user’s thoughts. "We will be working very closely with the University of Pittsburgh and the California Institute of Technology for their experience in brain computer interfaces, the University of Chicago for their expertise in sensory perception, the University of Utah for its capabilities in developing implantable devices suitable for interfacing with the human brain, and HDT Engineered Technologies for their skill in building prosthetic limb systems," APL’s Michael McLoughlin, program manager, says.